Plasmons can be thought of as waves of electrons in a metal surface. More specifically, plasmons are charge density oscillations in a metal or other conductive materials. A light incident on a metal surface can generate plasmons similar to how wind incident on water can generate waves. Light can create plasmons, and the oscillating charges of plasmons can also generate light. The plasmonic-optical interactions give rise to interesting physics at the nanoscale. See also: What is a Plasmon?

Nano-optics or nanophotonics is the study of light on the nanoscale. Typically visible light is limited by the diffraction limit and cannot be focused down to sizes smaller that about half the wavelength of visible light, less than hundreds of nanometers. Nano-optics deals with ways to overcome this diffraction limit in order to manipulate light at scales that are smaller than 100 nm. Plasmonics is one area of nano-optics. Plasmonic nanostructures can focus light to regions that can be less than 10 nm! Additionally, focusing light to such a small, highly-localized volume also generate extremely large optical enhancements in this nanoscale region. These enhancements can be used for applications including single molecule detectors [1], enhanced spectroscopies [2], cancer treatment [3], and more efficient solar cells [4].

Herzog Plasmonic Nano Optics Lab

Research in the Herzog Plasmonic Nano Optics Lab consists of: See here for more information on these Research Projects and Areas.

Interested in being part of the research group? See How to join the Herzog Lab.


Jun 21, 2019 - Article Published - A project lead by Ahmad Darweesh has recently been published, titled Effect of incidence and sidewall taper angles on plasmonic metal–semiconductor–metal photodetector enhancements, in the Journal of the Optical Society of America B.


May 11, 2019 - Ahmad Graduates with PhD! - After puting in much hard work over the past few years, Ahmad has graduated with his PhD. Dr. Herzog was able to come to Fayetteville to celebrate with him. Cheers and well done!


Apr 24, 2019 - Dr. Herzog Selected as a Faculty Development Fellow - Dr. Herzog has been selected to serve as a Faculty Development Fellow at the University of Indianapolis for the 2019-2020 academic year. As noted on the Faculty Development website: Faculty Fellows are specially selected faculty from across the University who offer workshops and consulting to individuals and departments as they also seek to grow their own strengths as faculty developers.

Apr 13, 2019 - Miles and Meredith present at Conference in Illinois - UIndy students from the Herzog Group presented their work at the Conference of Undergraduate Research & Scholarship. Miles presentation was titled Surface-enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SERS) with Subnanometer-Gap Metasurfaces and Meredith's presentation was titled Quantum Dots and Plasmonically Enhanced Photo Brightening. They did outstanding jobs, especially since they have only being in the group since last fall!


Apr 12, 2019 - Miles Places at UIndy Scholars Showcase - Miles Furr placed in second at the Scholars Showcase at UIndy for his oral presentation titled Surface-enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SERS) with Subnanometer-Gap Metasurfaces. Meredith Magee also contributed to the presentation. Well done!


Apr 5, 2019 - Ahmad passes his dissertation defense! - Congrats, Ahmad! Well-deserved for all of your hard work. Cheers!

Mar 19, 2019 - New Article in Materials Letters - In collaboration with researchers at the Institute for Nanoscience and Engineering at the University of Arkansas, Desalegn and Dr. Herzog have contributed to a work titled Plasmonic Emission of Hybrid Au/Ag Bullseye Nanostructures, which was recently published in Materials Letters.

Principal Investigator

Joseph B. Herzog, PhD
Assistant Professor
R.B. Annis School of Engineering
University of Indianapolis

Full Bio

Email: herzogjb

1400 E. Hanna Avenue, MH 206
Indianapolis, IN 46227

UARK Lab: PHYS 106
UARK Lab Phone: 5-6178

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